Bongeunsa and Coex

This is my second visit to Bongeunsa Temple after close to 10 years. The temple is beautifully decorated with coloured lanterns to celebrate Buddha’s Birthday in May.

The entrance with lanterns
Buddhist store at the entrance with a cafe and restaurant serving affordable vegan food

Below are guardians of Buddhism

Main prayer hall with ornate ceilings

Many people are bowing to Buddha in the main prayer hall. I try to avoid taking their photo.

Donate 5000 won for a candle to make a wish

I love such activities and the candles are crafted beautifully according to Zodiac sign

The main attraction for tourists in this temple is the giant statue of Maitreya Buddha. It is unlike the Chinese iconography that depicts Maitreya as a fat monk.

I arrived a bit late. Otherwise the cherry blossoms behind the Buddha would be in full bloom

Some people (including me) would critiqued that it is wasteful to build such giant statue of Buddha. But in my previous visit I witnessed a lady praying and sobbing silently in front of this Buddha. The red tiled area is for devotee to pray. I guess she found solaces and was dealing with her grief. That alone was priceless and who knows, it might have saved her from worse thoughts and actions. So I no longer say giant statue is a waste of money….

Bongeunsa is a delightful place and they even have activities for foreigners to experience Buddhism.

After the temple visit, you can visit Coex Mall situated opposite the temple. I had vegan food there and there was plenty to explore there.

Vegan Pasta
This is rice topped with tofu and fresh vegetables
Deep fried mushroom and tofu with soy sauce
This is a library in Coex mall. The towering book shelf is a must see

There is also an aquarium here but I did not visit. You might want to do so and spend more time in this area.

Categories: Travel

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3 replies »

  1. When I feel lost and alone before my idols, I pray. And I open myself to what is divine inside of them. Sometimes I cry. I don’t think it’s grief though. When I am being spiritually cleansed of my pain that is usually a side effect. They take away the darkness inside. Afterwords there is a calm like a storm has passed. And I do another minor cleansing to bring light and inner illumination within. Thank you for those wonderful blogs. Whether it’s about Buddhism or even a stroll into a market, you have brought me a sort of peace and thinking I wouldn’t have normally. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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